Bungie’s David Dague is the Communications Director at Bungie, the Managing Editor at Bungie.net, interacts often with the Destiny community, and is an occasional artist as well. We recently caught up with him between Sparrow Racing and general Destiny awesomeness to ask him some questions about the winter event going on right now in Destiny: Rise of Iron, The Dawning.
Activision Games Blog: Just in case people were off raiding and missed the announcement, what is The Dawning?
David Dague: The Dawning is the most recent party we’re throwing in Destiny. Our live team is hosting a season of giving and healthy competition. We’re inviting the players of Rise of Iron to share some gifts and games. Sparrow Racing League is making a comeback with two new tracks. Strikes are about to become a scored activity, with some new ways to strive for excellence. And, of course, because it’s Destiny, there are new weapons and gear to add to your Inventory.
When does The Dawning start and how long will it last?
The Dawning ushers in a new year for the players of Destiny. We kicked things off on December 13th. The chase will last until January 3rd.
Players have been asking for a return of the Sparrow Racing League for a while, but with The Dawning it feels like they are getting a whole lot more. Would you call The Dawning ‘SRL with a bonus?’ Or ‘a bonus with SRL included?’
This is a thematic event to celebrate a season in the game. The Dawning is a new holiday for a new civilization. It’s a product of refugees from the collapse of the golden age who gathered together under the Traveler from a thousand different nations. This celebration is a combination of many cultures. Sparrow Racing League is a crucial component, but there are many ways for Guardians to celebrate with sport.
Will SRL stick around past the end of The Dawning?
The League is comprised of special Quests, Bounties, and rewards. Those go away when The Dawning is over. If you love to race Sparrows with your friends, you’ll still be able to form up on the starting line in some Private Matches – just for the fun of it.
What can you tell us about the two SRL maps?
We call them Tracks, to capture the spirit of the race. You’ll find new races blasting through enemy territory on Earth and Mercury, in addition to the racetracks returning from last year, set on Venus and Mars. These new tracks have their own surprises. There are new hazards and obstacles. You’ll find some wide-open spaces that invite you to choose your own path. You’ll get some sweet air off of gravity cannons. And, our enemies will make their usual appearance, just to make things more interesting.
We’ll also see new quests in The Dawning, including new exotic quests. Any inside information about those?
Everything you need to know about obtaining new Exotic Weapons can be learned in the new Record Book for The Dawning. There are two new Exotic Machine Guns that you can use to make your Thunderlord part of a collection of awesome destruction.
No event in Destiny is complete without new loot. What can you tease about the items players can earn in The Dawning?
Sparrow Racing League will drop new armor into your lap as you cross the finish line. It will all have Light, so this special event is a chance for your Guardian to become more powerful. There is also some highly ornamental Dawning armor that will help your Guardian get into the spirit of the giving season.
Do you have a favorite new item?
I have my eye on the Nova Mortis Exotic Machine Gun. Those weapons are my favorite way to fight, and the purple glow suits my style as a Voidwalker. My Warlock is ready to accessorize, and there is a Quest to make sure I get the gifts on my list.
Strike Scoring is an entirely new feature coming to Destiny. What can you tell us about it?
Commander Zavala will be your leader for this live fire training exercise in Strikes. There is a new call to action to strive for combat excellence in this cooperative activity in Destiny. You can put points on the board for your team with killing sprees, flawless runs, or other feats of skill. There are dozens of ways to score. During The Dawning, there will be some great new rewards to be won from Strike Scoring. The Record Book will lead you to new things you can use to upgrade or customize your character.
What was the biggest challenge for the team in putting The Dawning together?
The challenge with Destiny is always to create things worth of the passion and enthusiasm of our community. Our goal is to surprise our players with new reasons to play Destiny, but those events and activities still need to feel like a logical part of the world they’ve come to know. Choosing the right theme and the right blend of activities was the challenge for The Dawning.
What tips do you have for players to get into The Dawning?
If you have Destiny: Rise of Iron, you have everything you need to compete. Let your favorite people on your friends list know that the fun has begun. Tell your Clan that the race has started. Destiny is always more fun to play with other people.
Some players may be getting into Destiny and Rise of Iron for the first time over the holiday season. What advice would you give them so that they can be the most effective Guardians?
Don’t be shy about asking for help. The Destiny community loves new Guardians. You’ll find that many of them are eager to show off their prowess and lead you through the most challenging activities in the game. You can find willing allies in the Recruitment forum of Bungie.net, or wherever you gather on the Internet to talk to your fellow gamers about the games you love to play.
And, if you’re racing, to quote Amanda Holliday: “There’s no reason not to boost!”
We couldn’t agree more. In fact, we’re wondering why you’re still reading this and not getting into The Dawning right now! A big thank you to David Dague and Bungie for this interview, and we’ll see you on the track, Guardians!